The body of missing local resident Sarah Rogers was found Saturday afternoon in Clinton, Maine, just a half-mile from where her car was abandoned on Interstate 95 in December, police said.
Rogers likely died of hypothermia, as indicated by her taking off some clothing prior to her death, Maine state police Lt. Don Pomelow said yesterday. An autopsy is scheduled for today.
"They become disoriented and they get the impression they're overheated," he said of hypothermia victims. "They start peeling off layers, which is what she had done," The Union Leader reported.
Bob Rogers, Sarah's father, said he felt "destroyed" upon receiving the call. "It's a lot of feelings," he said by phone from his home in Florida. "This was my worst fear. This was the fear that I had all long."
Bob Rogers said he assumed his daughter, who suffered from bipolar disorder, had abandoned her vehicle and walked into the woods because she was disoriented and delusional. He said if she were in the right state of mind she wouldn't have abandoned her vehicle and would have sought help rather than take off by herself.
"With my daughter, if she ever needed any help she would have called me," he said. "I can't imagine her not calling me if she were in her right mind," Foster's Daily Democrat informs.
Rogers, the mother of a 2-year-old son, disappeared after driving into a snowbank off the highway. Keys were in the ignition, and Rogers's cell phone and other belongings were in the vehicle. The police searched the area but found nothing but footprints heading toward the southbound lane, suggesting a passing motorist might have picked her up.
A vigil was held in January to highlight the search for Rogers, also known as Marla Moon. On Tuesday, Rogers's family appeared on NBC's Today Show and renewed pleas for help in locating her, The Associated Press reports.